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Expert gardener shares simple method to growing seemingly endless supply of kitchen staple vegetable: 'I didn't know this'

"That's brilliant!"

"That's brilliant!"

Photo Credit: TikTok

You may have heard of propagating houseplants or sprouting green onions, but did you know you can do the same thing with store-bought broccoli? 

The scoop

Simon Akeroyd (@simonakeroydgardener) is a TikToker and expert gardener who shares incredible tips for how to get the most out of your home garden. In one popular clip, he shows viewers how to propagate broccoli from the grocery store. 

It's a fairly intuitive process if you are familiar with propagation, yet as Akeroyd wrote in the caption, "this is one of the harder vegetables to get to grow." Still, he says, "it can be done."

@simonakeroydgardener Gardeners call it calabrese, supermarkets call it broccoli. This is a video i made last year, but many of you may not have seen it. This is one of the harder vegetables to get to grow, but it can be done. Good luck if you give it a try. #sustainablegardening #zerowaste #vegetablegardeningforbeginners #vegetablegardening #growyourown #growyourgroceries #foryou ♬ Go Your Own Way (2004 Remaster) - Fleetwood Mac

In the TikTok video, Akeroyd takes viewers through the steps. First, cut off the florets of the broccoli, and then remove the bottom two centimeters (just under an inch) from the base of the stem. Next, place this trimmed stem in a container of water, "leave it on the windowsill," and wait. 

After some time, it will put out new shoots, leaves, and hopefully florets. Once it's nicely growing in water, you can transfer your broccoli to soil to continue growing. You can see the growth of the creator's hair from start to finish so be prepared for this process to take some time.

How it's helping

Growing additional plants from your store-bought veggies is a great way to stretch your dollar. Plus, if you are successful in your efforts, your harvest may save more money on trips to the grocery store. 

Growing plants from scraps helps you avoid buying seeds and can be great for those of us who don't have outdoor space for a garden. Plants like sprouts can be grown on the counter or on a windowsill. 

Growing food at home can save you hundreds of dollars a year. Gardening can also help alleviate pressures on our food system. Much of our food has a large carbon footprint due to "food miles," or the distances between the farm and your plate. 

As Carbon Brief wrote, "Maintaining the current global food system requires food and related equipment to be transported … accounting for almost one-fifth of total food system emissions."

In addition to the environmental benefits, gardening is also a healthy pastime. Some studies show those who garden are happier and get more fiber in their diets. 

🗣️ Would you buy juice or yogurt made with bruised or misshapen fruit?

🔘 If I couldn't tell the difference 🤔

🔘 If it were cheaper 💰

🔘 If it were healthier 🍎

🔘 I'd never buy it 🚫

🗳️ Click your choice to see results and speak your mind

What everyone's saying

Folks in the comments were blown away by propagating broccoli. 

One person said, "No way! Broccoli is my fave and I didn't know this!!"

Another commenter wrote about the slow process, saying, "I have mine in water for almost a month and I just noticed one root growing."

Finally, someone simply chimed in, "That's brilliant!!" 

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